I have a problem. With cheesecake. Yes, you heard correctly. See, the problem is I love cheesecake. And my husband belongs to a very elite group of "Cheesecake Haters." And my son is severely allergic to milk. Are you starting to see the problem? You see, at the end of the day, its just me and a cheesecake.... and no one else. Yep, definitely a problem. Well, these little cookies are the solution to one of Life's Greatest Mysteries- how to eat cheesecake without finishing the whole pan. (If you were not aware that this was one of Life's Greatest Mysteries, then this recipe is definitely not for you.) Because each cookie is a mini cheesecake, packaged neatly in a crisp buttery cookie, and drizzled with rich, creamy, milk chocolate drizzle- you can eat one cookie and then hand the rest over to your husband/coworker/roommate to put under lock and key. And you still get to eat the whole cheesecake. Enjoy!
Chocolate Cheesecake Thumbprint Cookies
3/4 cup butter, softened (do not substitute with margarine)
1/2 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons lemon juice or ½ teaspoon lemon extract
¼ teaspoon salt
2 egg yolks
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
4 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
¼ cup granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
1 large egg yolk
1½ teaspoon sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Milk Chocolate Drizzle:
3 ounces milk chocolate
3 ounces heavy cream
1 teaspoon corn syrup
Prepare the filling:
In a bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat cream cheese on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add ¼ cup sugar and a pinch of salt, and beat until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add egg yolk, sour cream, and vanilla; beat until smooth. Transfer to a small bowl, and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
Prepare the cookies:
Preheat oven to 350 F. In a medium bowl, cream together the butter, white sugar, lemon juice, salt and egg yolks. Mix in flour a little bit at a time until a soft dough forms. Roll dough into 1 inch balls. If dough is too soft, refrigerate for 15 to 20 minutes. Place balls 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets. Use your finger or an instrument of similar size (I used the back of an infant medicine dropper) to make a well in the center of each cookie. Bake 10 minutes; remove from oven and make indentations again. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely. Using a small teaspoon, fill the center of each cookie with about 1 teaspoon cream cheese filling, mounding it slightly. Return cookies to the oven and bake until the filling is firm, 10-12 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
To prepare the drizzle, heat the heavy cream and corn syrup in a small saucepan until it boils. Watch the cream carefully, since once it starts boiling, it boils over the side of the pot. Meanwhile, chop up the chocolate into small pieces, and place into a small bowl. Pour hot cream mixture over the chocolate and stir until smooth. Allow to cool, and transfer to a Ziploc bag. Snip off the corner, and drizzle over cooled cookies.
Refrigerate in an airtight container, layered between waxed or parchment paper, at least 4 hours before serving (cookies can be refrigerated overnight).
Note: This recipe yields 30 cookies approximately. These cookies are best eaten after they have been refrigerated overnight. They can also be frozen. Allow them to sit at room temperature for twenty minutes before serving.